It was later than he planned when Doc rolled into Monterey from his collecting trip up the coast; in fact, it was past midnight. 

That’s why he was surprised to see the lights blazing as he approached his lab/residence on Cannery Row and the front door ajar. As he entered the lab he was beyond surprised… he was shocked. His specimen jars were strewn around the floor and the place was a chaotic mess of broken glass, alcohol and marine species.  

He climbed the stairs to his living quarters and it all started to make sense. A banner proclaiming “Happy Birthday Doc” was tacked to the wall and Luke and Smiley and their cohort of itinerant hobos were asleep wherever they had fallen. The empty whisky bottles told the tale. Doc shook his head as he entered the kitchen.  Amidst the mess, there was one small oasis of order – a lone bottle of wine with a birthday ribbon around it.  

“Well I’ll be damned,” Doc said to himself, “these guys have some class after all.” It was a bottle of 2018 Complant Pinot Noir from the Soberanes Vineyard just over the hill in the Santa Lucia Highlands by Soledad. Doc pulled the cork and filled a glass. The beautiful cherry color soothed him and aromas of pomegranate, cranberry and raspberry bramble leapt from the glass. On the palate, the wine had a lacy texture, with a long fruit-laden persistence that was remarkable.

“Well,” Doc murmured to himself, “it’s turning out to be a happy birthday after all.”

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